Federal Court Holds That NYSPA Has Standing to Sue United Healthcare
In a precedent-setting decision issued earlier today, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals held that NYSPA has associational standing at this point in the litigation to challenge alleged parity violations by United HealthCare in its role as claims administrator.
The Court also held that United HealthCare is the proper defendant in the case because it exercised total control over claims for benefits under the terms of the health plan. These portions of the lower court decision were vacated and remanded back to District Court.
We are very pleased with the Court's finding that NYSPA has standing at this point in the litigation to represent the interests of our members and their patients, particularly where we believe that health plans are violating federal parity laws and interfering with access to care for the treatment of mental illness. In addition, the decision of the Court regarding the ability to sue plan administrators is particularly important because it removes a technicality that plan administrators might raise to avoid being responsible when they make determinations that run afoul of federal parity laws.